We continue to see more and more evidence that the market for high-end diamonds and precious gems is beginning to catch fire.
Earlier this week, in fact, the magnificent Aurora green diamond sold for a record-setting $16.8 million (HK$130 million) to a Hong Kong jewelry company.
The buyer of the Aurora diamond was Chow Tai Fook Jewellery, based in Hong Kong. The company is among the world's largest jewelry retailers and is certainly no novice in the sphere of high-value auctions of luxury jewelry. According to the South China Morning Post, "In 2010, the jeweller bid HK$275 million on a 507-carat Cullinan Heritage rough diamond, breaking the price record for a rough diamond." The name "Cullinan" may be familiar to some, as this was the name given to the biggest diamond ever discovered in South Africa around the turn of the 20th century. That gem was eventually cut into the largest polished white diamonds in the world, which remain in the British Crown Jewels to this day.
Measuring in at 5.03 carats, the Aurora diamond hauled in an incredible $3.3 million per carat. In addition to the total sale price, this was also a new world record-high for a green-colored diamond. It bested the previous record by a wide margin, and in short order: Forbes reports that the previous best of $8.6 million was realized less than a month ago by a "fancy vivid blue-green diamond" known as "The Ocean Dream." This gemstone measured 5.5 carats, hauling in $1.5 million per carat.
The Aurora gem is set on a gold ring and surrounded by circular pink diamonds (pictured, right). Its estimated value was between $16 million and $20 million, making the record-setting sale on the low end of the range.
In total, the jewelry auction that included the Aurora green diamond attracted 197 buyers from 19 different countries. The total sales exceeded $85 million.
Here are a few other record-setting highlights, courtesy of Anthony DeMarco for Forbes:
- A pair of oval-shaped Burmese ruby earrings sold for $11.6 million, a world-record for a pair of ruby ear pendants at auction.
- An Art Deco sapphire and diamond bracelet sold for $7.2 million, which likewise set a world-record for a bracelet at auction.
- A pendant necklace with multiple gems sold for nearly $1 million ($967,164), a new record-high for a jewel by Wallace Chan.
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